“The parables that are Jesus’ response to the Pharisees’ murmuring still have the power to expose the roots of bitterness that dig their way into us whenever we feel that God is too good to others and not good enough to us. Typically, we want mercy for ourselves and justice for others, but the Lukan parables call for us to celebrate with God because God has been merciful not only to us but to others also, even to those we would not otherwise have accepted into our fellowship.” (New Interpreter’s Bible Volume on Luke p. 298) Worship this week will be rooted in Luke 15: 1-3, 11b-32 Many folks may be familiar with this passage. It is a story which holds multiple meanings and many possible outcomes. Ultimately it is a story with many twists and turns. One of the turns may be found in verse 17 where we read that the younger son “came to himself”.
If this is a story about “coming to oneself” then each character must come to a unique place. Where might each character come down in this story? Imagine the father, the eldest son and the younger son. Depending on the character you identify, what do you imagine your decision about attending the celebration might be?